Riot Police Fire Rubber Bullets and Smash Into Polling Stations with Axes in Barcelona

October 1, 2017

Riot police have been deployed on the streets this morning as polling stations opened across Catalonia for the region’s controversial independence referendum.

Officers were seen storming buildings across the northeastern Spanish region before walking out with seized ballot boxes.

Footage captured in the village of Sarria de Ter in the province of Girona showed authorities using an axe to smash down the doors of a polling station where Catalan’s president Carles Puigdemont was due to cast his vote.

And in Barcelona, the region’s capital, officers fired rubber bullets at thousands of protesters demonstrating against their votes being taken away.

Spain’s Constitutional Court has suspended the referendum and the central government says it is illegal.

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